I like to consider myself a visual artist. Anyone who knows me knows calligraphy and mosaics are a passion of mine. I also love music, but quite honestly, I don’t understand how it is made, what notes mean, or how to read sheet music. And, most people who have heard me sing would agree that I can’t carry a tune! However, when I am driving alone, I sing along to Bob Dylan as if I am performing on the Grammy stage.

You may be wondering what this information has to do with anything. Well, this past weekend, our community was fortunate enough to have musical artist Noah Aronson delight us with his gift of song. On Friday, February 22nd, I enjoyed a beautiful community Shabbat service at Temple Beth Or, where Noah led us through traditional prayers in a melodic and calming way. Accompanying Noah was the incredible Dayton Jewish Chorale. It was an evening of magic.

The magic continued Saturday with a lunch hosted by Temple Israel, followed by a music education session with Noah. On Sunday, Beth Abraham hosted a special combined religious school program in collaboration with PJ Library and the other congregations. The kids were able to learn some of Noah’s music and were treated to a special mini-concert!

Aside from Noah’s amazing talent, I was inspired by the collective effort put forth by all of those involved. The weekend, sponsored in part by a Federation Innovation Grant, really captured the essence of community collaboration.

Innovation Grant applications are currently being accepted through April 1st. The grant aims to support programs and initiatives that bring the community together for unique or one-of-a-kind programming. If you are interested in applying for an innovation grant, or have questions, please contact Jodi Phares at or 937-610-5513. Applications can be found on our website,




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